Ask Emily: How to Have Sex Standing Up

A Man and woman hugging naked
Dear Emily,

My partner and I want to try sex standing up, but could definitely use some pointers. There’s a major height difference, for one, but also—it’s something neither of us has done before! Help a sister out?

– Stand Up Hopeful 

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Dear Stand Up Hopeful,

What a fun question! It makes me think about all hot movie scenes with stand up sex, the implication being: we’re so hot for each other, we couldn’t even WAIT for bed. 

So I totally get the appeal, and since you’re both new to the act, I also get why you need some guidance. Because while movies make stand up sex looks effortless (ditto on the orgasms), the reality is: we need to account for physics and gravity. Fortunately, we can do so—in the sexiest way possible. 

Here are 6 ideas to approach stand up sex—ideas that encourage passion, and discourage hip dislocations. Let’s do this: 

1. Start kneeling, in bed.

These will be our “training wheels” for stand up sex, to help you get used to verticality. Have one partner face towards the wall or headboard, hands braced against the surface in front of them. Then, have the other partner insert from behind, using their hands to pull your hips into them. Pretty hot, right? It’s even hotter if they keep a hand on their partner’s hips, and use the other one to explore breasts/pecs. 

2. Use the bed for leverage.

Staying with the bed for a moment, this next step will be slightly dependent on bed height. But if it’s feasible for everyone’s stature, have one partner stand in front of the bed, to then fold at the waist, laying their upper body on top of the bed itself. The other partner will stand behind them and enter from behind (just like idea #1), but now, one of you is standing squarely on the floor. Progress!

3. Say hello to your dresser.

Congratulations: you’re now moving up a level, to both people standing! For this position, the receiving partner will stand in front of the dresser, resting their hands on the surface. The other partner will stand from behind and enter but do keep in mind that the receiving partner might have to lean forward a bit with their upper body for easy access. (Think doggy style, but upright.) From there, the giving partner can enter with a penis or strap-on/dildo.

Quick safety check here: there’s a LOT of weight pressing forward on that dresser, so make sure it’s flush against a wall. If not, find a similar piece of furniture, that is, so you avoid tipping anything over and causing a catastrophe (although it might be a funny story for the IKEA returns department if you explain what happened).

4. Face each other for foreplay.

We’ve all seen that super-sexy silhouette, of one partner pressing their back against a wall, the other partner facing them, one hand on the wall behind them, the other hand holding their partner’s leg (anyone? Just me and my Netflix history?). 

But listen – you’ve just graduated to fully standing, facing each other. So how about you recreate that setup, and simply let your hands explore? Don’t worry about penetration just yet…this is such a hot moment to kiss, reach under each other’s clothes, and slide a hand between their legs. Also: what if one person opted to kneel for oral, while the other stood? Vulva owners, if oral is what helps bring you to orgasm, I highly encourage this maneuver during standing sex. Simply spread your legs, or place one foot on a nearby chair while standing.

5. Explore your available surface areas. 

Another lusty take on standing sex (that still keeps everyone safe!) is having one person sitting or laying down on a stable surface, like a kitchen counter or work desk, while the giving partner stays standing, and faces them for insertion. You mentioned a height differential – this move is perfect for that, especially for taller partners, when they’re on the giving side. If you both work from home, I believe this would be a welcome work break. 

6. No props, just you.

And now, for the most advanced of all: standing sex with no walls, furniture, or flat surfaces! This is definitely the most athletic option of the bunch but can happen if the giving partner feels comfortable holding the other, for Stand & Carry. 

In this position, the receiving partner will wrap their legs around the giving partner’s waist, while the giver uses at least one hand to keep their butt in place. Like I said: it’s a lot, especially for the giving partner. But if you’re comfortable give it a shot, and when it becomes too exhausting, back up a few steps and explore another option. 

I think you’re both going to have a blast playing with these. Enjoy your next stand up sesh, and write back to tell me how it goes!